I’m a laid back person & mom with inexplicable tendencies to get fired-up at trivialities. I try to find the humor in almost everything. Perhaps that’s why my doting husband and I never fight – we deftly mock our troubles away. We are blessed to be a finely-tuned MomDad machine, united on all fronts. We have 3 amazing young sons, ages 4, 2.5 and 1.
My interests might be better categorized as fantasies, considering the circumstances. I studied art in school, seeing it as an enjoyable means to a medical end, but I ultimately decided against Physical Therapy, and started making logos. Then, I stopped making logos and started making babies. My boys are a perfect excuse to do what I really love: play. I enjoy problem-solving, photography, many types of music, playing most sports (racquetball!!), shoot-em-up video games, almost any board game, doodling, reading, technology, travel, and most of all spending time with family and friends.
I started blogging because, firstly, I type much faster than I write, and there is so much I want to remember about my family life. Secondly, I want to close the distance between us and our family and friends who don’t get to see the kids’ daily antics. If anyone else sneaks a little schadenfreude at my motherly fumbling – enjoy!
Brian is my hero. He keeps me sane when I’m on the verge of giving myself a swirly. He’s a rock star with the boys and can be frequently found on our giant Foof Chair, reading piles of stories to the boys, tossing the boys about on said chair, or herding them to the bath tub. Otherwise, he is mercifully executing the back log of dishes or finding a great new tweak for my blog. He is the Uber-husband. I could not have dreamed him up if I tried.
I consider him multi-awesome because he plays guitar, is sufficiently tech-geeky, is the funniest person I know, is fantastically devoted to his family, doesn’t take himself or life too seriously, excels at what he does, loves to travel, is spiritual, compassionate, open-minded and patient. To offset the fluffiness, he’s also six-foot-three and has enough Tae Kwon Do trophies to fence a bull, which, incidentally, would cage itself at the mention of Brian’s name.
We’ve been married since 2001, and I still feel that girly giddiness to see him when he walks in the door, and I’m still enchanted by his smile. Having a family with him is the greatest adventure yet!
Ian (pronounced “ee-an,” not to be confused for “eye-an” or Ethan) is our oldest. He’s a lean jumping machine. I recall a time when I wondered, like the mom of a first-born, if he was ever going to learn to jump, because I seemed to remember someone else’s child jumping at his age. Now, we’ve had to set strict rules about not leaping off of his bunk bed. He loves his little brothers, and does about all a 4-year-old can do to protect and entertain them, except, on occasion, when they have a toy he wants.
Ian has a vivid imagination, and loves to play the hero. He loves his bike, cars, space, machines, building or dismantling anything and everything, cooking, holding small performances, going to the movie “feater,” and snuggling. He’s a deep thinker and very inquisitive.
To shamelessly interject a personal agenda, he was born via C-Section, due, in my opinion, to over-intervention at the hospital. He likes to remind me that, “I came out of your belly, and Isaac came out of your belly, but Elijah took a ‘gina.” Breastfeeding was shockingly bewildering to start, but we stuck to it and he nursed until he was 33 months old (also known as “the day I left him with Grandma to go on a two-week jaunt to Australia and New Zealand”). He LOVED nursing. He would nurse for as long and as frequently as I would let him. After our trip, and some encouragement (I was pregnant and nursing hurt!), he let it go for a while, but has since been trying to convince me to teach him how to nurse again. He’d also been in our “family bed” until baby Elijah was a couple months old and we finally conceded that five in a bed was too many. We got him on board with the “moving out” idea by setting up a bunk bed nearby and buying a pair of glow worms. Now, the little politician requests to snuggle “for a few minutes” every night, hoping we’ll forget to send him to bed.
Isaac is a little more complicated for me to describe. He has followed after his big brother from the start. He’s always had a way with words and sound effects. Asking him to fall asleep without babbling is like asking me to sleep with my eyes open. He’s cuddly, yet independent. When I would nurse him to sleep, he would always pet my face and play with my ears with his gentle little hot hands. He loves to be held and to sit in a lap and read stories. On the other hand, when we are all piled in bed for snuggles and stories, he’ll be the first to pop up and say, “I’m going to bed now.” During the day, he frequently wanders off for solo play with his trains. He’s more reserved than his big brother, and more comfortable with alone time. It’s hard to tell what is age and what is personality.
Isaac was a repeat C-Section, after an overly-interventional VBAC attempt. When he was small, he was a much snappier nurser than Ian. He wouldn’t have anything to do with it when I came back from my wonderful awful trip to Australia (I’m never leaving my babies again!). He is very passionate and wears his heart on his sleeve. He was born with big eyebrows and looked so serious, but when he laughed, it was all-out. He still does everything decisively and with all his heart.
Isaac loves (LOVES) trains. He’s a homebody and would be happy to stay home all day every day playing trains and reading stories. He runs circles around the house with Ian and tries to do all the leaping, rolling tricks Ian does. To Brian’s dismay, he also loves Dora (in addition to Cars and Toy Story), and loves to fill his purple Dora backpack with his trains and role-play with Dora characters. He’s also the world’s biggest fan of cheese, rivaled only by Brian.
Elijah is our feisty littlest one, challenging his world since the day he was born. He entered the world through a remarkable VBA2C experience. He was born with hundreds of perplexing skin lesions on his body, and after 9 days of extensive testing, his condition received the name Langerhan’s Cell Histiocytosis (LCH). I won’t spend all his bio space explaining it, but I will say it is both cancer-like and autoimmune, and it was also in his lungs, bone marrow and lymph nodes. He spent 11 weeks in the hospital and just finished a year of chemotherapy to treat it, and as far as we know, he’s doing fantastically.
I know I’ve forgotten a lot from the first two, and I know there’s a developmental benefit to having two busy older brothers, but I still get stunned by how much he’s already figured out about his world. He just brought me a soggy strawberry and brow-beat me into eating it, then he grabbed a nearby tissue and scrubbed my mouth.
He was our earliest walker, taking his first steps at 11 months (as opposed to 14). When he got a walker/riding toy for Christmas, he tried to use it as a scooter. He combines abilities of his brothers, being both vocal and agile. Elijah is probably the happiest baby I know. He is also fantastically determined. I don’t know if that is the reason he is a survivor, or a result of it. I missed a critical window, apparently, and haven’t been able to teach him to use a straw. In fact, he won’t suck on a bottle or sippy cup or anything. Instead, he’ll blow bubbles, play a kazoo or recorder or empty his nose into a tissue. Perhaps those features have a greater benefit, but for a child who drinks only out of a regular cup and insists on doing it himself, it presents a challenge. If I pull waffles out of the freezer, he bounces on his chubby little legs, insisting, “ohh wooow woo!” So, I break off a piece and he scowls at me, slamming the bite to the floor, saying, “no no nooo!” and demands the bigger piece in my hand.
He is also an efficient nurser, and will nurse only when he demands it. He was a scary child, and I feel at the limit of my parenting abilities, so we’re fairly certain he’s the last. That being said, I mourn each “last” milestone, and will probably try to nurse him and stuff him into onesies until he’s 12.